FM Meets Roxanne de Bastion

"‘You & Me, We Are The Same’ is not a sad album. In fact, it’s the most uplifting and musically adventurous collection of songs I’ve ever recorded."
3 February 2022

By Vee D

Ahead of her official UK headline tour in February and March, British singer-songwriter Roxanne de Bastion talks to FM and shares an intimate filmed conversation between herself and Bernard Butler, the producer of her stunning album ‘You & Me, We Are The Same.’

Hi Roxanne! What’s on your mind right now?

Hi! Thanks for having me here! Right this minute my mind is occupied with getting ready for playing live shows again, which is both exciting and terrifying after 18 months of no-shows due to the pandemic. 

Tell us everything we should know about your new album ‘You & Me, We Are The Same’ 

Uff.. I couldn’t possibly tell you everything you need to know about it, but hopefully, you can listen to it and fill in all the gaps. All ten songs were written and recorded at a time when I was losing my dad, who was also a musician and very much my best friend as well as mentor and musical partner. It was a very tough time. Having said that, ‘You & Me, We Are The Same’ is not a sad album. In fact, it’s the most uplifting and musically adventurous collection of songs I’ve ever recorded. It was a time of heightened emotion with lots of peaks and troughs, which really comes through in the album I think. Basically, it’s just full of love. I recorded it throughout 2019 at Bernard Butler’s house in North London and am just thrilled that it’s finally out in the world now and making an impact. 

How was it to work with Bernard Butler?

It was very easy. I sent him my demos, we met for a coffee and within a week we were recording at his house (which is full of guitars, as you might imagine). 

Every session started with a leisurely coffee and a chat, then we’d get to work on recording the songs (a lot of the songs are built on full, live takes of vocals and guitars). We’d then build the tracks up with innovative sounds such as percussion consisting of stomping and clapping, creating real reverb by singing in the hallway, etc.  Bernard is so good at knowing exactly where to push and prod a song to make it the best it can be, so I learned a lot in the process of recording this album and am super grateful for that. 

When you’re writing a song, how do you know when you have an idea worth pursuing?

You don’t – the key is to pursue it regardless and not edit yourself too soon. Sometimes you can tell instantly that an idea is special (on those rare occasions when the idea seems to come to you fully formed), but mostly the key is to persevere and not dismiss an idea too soon. 

Where do you like to listen to your music?

In the kitchen. Clearly the best room for listening to and playing music. There’s natural reverb and snacks. 

Do you put a lot of pressure on yourself?

Yes. Always. How did you know? 

Who are your influences? 

My biggest musical influences are my dad and John Lennon. I’m a self-taught musician, but most things I do know, I learned from my dad. We’d spend hours upon hours playing Beatles songs together in the kitchen (I’d usually be McCartney). I was also heavily influenced by Alanis Morissette and, a little later, Regina Spektor. I continue to be inspired by the freedom she illustrates in her songwriting. 

What was the last gig you played and what did you think of it?

I got to perform at the Victorious Festival on the August Bank Holiday, which also happened to be my birthday, so it was a pretty special day! It was my first big show back since the start of the pandemic, so I definitely felt the nerves. The audience was great, the sun was out and I got to see Mel C. perform right after my set – couldn’t ask for more! 

What have you got lined up for 2022: 

‘You & Me, We Are The Same’ official UK headline tour in February and March! Dates below

23rd February: The Horn, St Albans 

24th February: Portland Arms, Cambridge 

25th February: Crofters, Bristol  

26th February: The Listening Room, Thame Oxfordshire 

27th February: The Phoenix, Exeter 

1st March: The Cookie, Leicester  

2nd March: The Trades Club, Hebden Bridge 

3rd March: Leaf, Liverpool  

5th March: Adelphi, Hull 

6th March: Bobiks, Newcastle  

7th March: The Hug & Pint, Glasgow  

8th March: Sneaky Pete’s, Edinburgh  

9th March: Gullivers, Manchester  

10th March: The Tin Music & Arts, Coventry  

12th March: Tiny Rebel, Cardiff  

13th March: The Brook, Southampton  

17th March: The Courtyard Theatre, London 

Tickets available from Roxanne de Bastion’s website here .

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